As a tea addict I am constantly on the hunt for tea. I mean literally every store, event or venue I go to I check to see if tea is present anywhere. I suppose some folks shop for clothes, others for gadgets and gizmos but I shop for tea. So when I was at the Freight House Farmer’s Market in Davenport I of course went in search for tea. I was surprised that there were several stands selling everything from kombucha to matcha to loose leaf. Tea was well represented here!
After walking around a bit I stumbled upon Laughing Tree Tea’s vendor stand. I must admit the free sample of peach green tea got me. I am a sucker for samples. But the sample was very nice so I decided to scope out the offerings. There were a lot of teas to smell and different sizes of tea to purchase. I do appreciate when companies offer sample packs of tea because honestly I am drowning in tea reserves. I often times want to sample a tea but don’t want to commit to a whole 2 ounces. Plus my husband tells me I might have to rent a storage pod if I continue to add to my collection. At any rate i purchased 4 samples to try.
Like a kid in a candy store I ripped open the first sample as soon as I got home! The first one I have tried and am reviewing today is Pumpkin Chai.
Laughing Tree Tea (try saying that 3 times fast) is a hand blended and locally sourced company that sells their tea in their cafe in Waterloo, IA but also at various farmer’s markets in the area. I smelled the sample of Pumpkin Chai in the vendor stall and immediately loved it! The scent is spicy, sweet and a bit nutty. I steeped my sample up at 212 degrees for 3 minutes. I felt that the tea could actually benefit for a slightly longer steep time so I let it steep an additional 2 minutes after my first sip. The base of this tea is black tea with rooibos. I enjoyed the mix of teas as the rooibos lends a nutty and sweet dimension to the blend. The traditional chai spices like cinnamon, ginger, cloves, cardamom and black pepper are present as is coriander. I absolutely love coriander, it gives such a warm distinct flavor to blends. Also, almond, orange, flower petals and nut oil are added.
I really loved this tea. The spices blend so well together without being too spicy. There is a slight hint of pumpkin so I am suspecting that is contained in the natural flavors that are added. I loved this tea on its own but did find that adding a bit of soy milk enhanced the flavor. I suspect this will make an amazing latte.
This is an excellent blend and I have high hopes for the other 3 tea samples that I picked up. It seems that so often we hear about the large tea companies out there but the smaller companies like Laughing Tree Tea are doing some amazing things with tea that deserve to get noticed!
Want to Know More About This Tea?
Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Laughing Tree Tea
Warm up with this with this pumpkin flavored chai. If you like pumpkin this is your chai. Offered seasonally be sure to pick up your brew. Chai is traditionally served sweetened and this fun tea is pre-sweetened with ghost and pumpkin candies.
Ingredients: Tea, Cinnamon, Apple & Rosehip pieces, Ginger, Cardamom, Black & White pepper, Candy, Hibiscus & Calendula & Sunflower petals, Clove, Nutmeg, and Natural flavors.
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
The Harvest Collection, DAVIDsTEA’s Fall lineup of teas focuses fresh farm-to-table inspired blends. These teas have some new and exciting flavors that certainly had me intrigued. I brewed them all up hot, as per the company’s recommended steeping parameters.
First up is Just Beet It, a mate blend that intends to highlight the beetroot, apple, goji, and blackberries. Personally of the five teas, this is one of two I was most worried about due to the mate base. Luckily for me, it doesn’t seem as though there is much of it among the dry leaf. Anyways, I brewed this up and it came out a beautiful clear reddish-pink color. I am pleased to report, the earthy rainforest note often associated with mate is not found here. Instead, this tea is light and fruity with clear berry notes (leaning more towards blackberry actually, though the raspberry is still very much present) and an apple sweetness. Tartness from the gojis pop up here and there which is a welcome distraction from the other, sweeter ingredients. I don’t get much in the way of beets, though other than that, it seems like DAVIDs aptly described this tea
Next is Pear Blossom, the other blend I was most worried about trying, this time due to the addition of stevia. This is a herbal infusion that hopes to bring out the flavors of pear, papaya, pineapple, and sunflower. It steeps up a clear yellowish tone and has a great pear scent. Unfortunately for me, as expected, the stevia is just too much for my tastes to handle. I get a touch of pear flavor and some distinctive peach flavoring and even a slight nod towards florals but that all devolves into the cloying sweetness of stevia.
Honeycrisp Apple, the one I am most indifferent about trying, is one I have tried before. Of the group, I believe this is the only returning tea. It is a green tea which is concentrated around apples, of course. Steeped, it is incredibly clear, with slight blush undertones. The flavor is also very light. Too light in fact that I find myself searching for anything at all more than just sweet. In the past when I had this iced, I remember it being more flavorful and representative of its namesake but as a hot tea it is just too muted and thus rather forgettable.
This next tea, Wild Strawberry, I found particularly compelling due to the rosemary. A herbal blend of strawberry, hibiscus, and vanilla, spiked with a sprig of the herb to keep things interesting. It brews up the color of all other strawberry/hibscus blends and also has a familiar taste. This reminds me slightly of DAVIDsTEA’s Strawberry Rhubarb Parfait, with a clear and juicy strawberry flavor that is a little tart, but with the vanilla giving it that creaminess as opposed to yogurt chips. Unfortunately, like with so many other DAVIDsTEA blends that boast a cream element, as this one does, there is also an artificial note that is offputting. On the other hand, the rosemary, though less prominent than I expected, does add a unique quality to this blend that I enjoyed.
Finally we have Orange Glow. Now I am not usually one for orange teas but this herbal blend of carrots, orange, and ginger smelled so good that I got a whole 50 grams of it, as opposed to my usual sample size (granted I got the 50 grams for free with the purchase of a Tea Press but still). So, with that much in my stash, I have my fingers crossed that this will be good. First thing I noticed, is it steeps up the usual deep purplish-red of a hibiscus-rich herbal. Here’s hoping that doesn’t transfer over to the taste… thankfully it does not. This is an interesting tea actually, one unlike other DAVIDsTEA blends I have had before. The orange is there in flavor but subtle and lacking its typical brightness while there is a lot of carrot sweetness but no actual carrot flavor. There is also a touch of ginger flavor but no spicy kick. If I am being honest, the combination of the components, while not bad per-se, falls a bit flat.
All in all, for me, this collection misses the mark. Each tea has its potential but none quite reach it. Perhaps more experimenting can help make these better but brewed hot, per recommended steeping parameters, none of these made a great first impression. The teas are worth a try given they are different than DAVIDsTEA’s usual Fall lines and I will say, of the lot I was surprised to enjoy Just Beet It as much as I did, but even that isn’t making it onto any favorites lists anytime soon.
Here’s the scoop!
Where to Buy: DAVIDs Tea
Savour the sunshine with this collection of five fruity fall teas. With sweet apple and lively green tea, Honeycrisp Apple captures that orchard freshness we love so much. Orange Glow is a vibrant blend of carrot, ginger and orange. Pear Blossom tastes just like biting in to a juicy Anjou pear. Wild Strawberry combines ripe berries with a lively twist of rosemary. And with beetroot, goji berries and blackberries, Just Beet It is the perfect way to put some pep in your step
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
It’s that time of year again: pumpkin season! I’ll admit, I’m a bit of a sucker for all things pumpkin spice, so it’s no surprise that I’m drinking pumpkin tea. But with all the ridiculous pumpkinacolpyse products that come out this time of year, let’s see how Happy Pumpkin Tea from Amoda teas holds up.
For one, this tea has actual pumpkin as a main ingredient. You can actually see orange pumpkin pieces in the dry leaf, and the starchy, sweet potato flavor is forward in the hot brew.
In addition to the usual spice suspects– cinnamon, ginger, and cloves– the blend also has allspice and cocoa nibs. The allspice builds on the traditional chai flavors, giving an unexpected peppery note, most prevalent in the fragrance. The cocoa nibs play well with the pumpkin, bringing out a brown sugar sweetness from both ingredients. Ceylon black tea gives this blend body and brews up surprisingly smooth.
Happy Pumpkin Tea is definitely worth a try for any pumpkin enthusiast.
We just wanted to take a moment and welcome MrsPremise to the SororiTea Sisters! We hope you enjoy her reviews as much as we do!
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Amoda Tea
-This tea was part of the October’s monthly box.